Credit NurPhotoCredit NurPhoto

I don’t know why I’m here. My away record – like the team’s – has been poor this season. I made it to Arsenal away in the cup, only to see Moyes play an anaemic-looking side when the opposition were there for the taking. Sitting there, as Danny Welbeck stumbled off celebrating a tap in as only Danny Welbeck really does, I thought to myself “forget this”. If Moyes won’t go for it in games when we have nothing to lose, why should I come and watch them? If the fan-cams from recent away games are anything to go by, I’m not the only fan questioning why.

If a band is ever lucky enough to make it to a 4th album, it’s usually the one where they promise to “go back to their roots”. Forget the 8 minute trumpet outro we had on the last album – we know what you (the fans) really like, and this time, we’re going back to what worked in the first place. West Ham vs Dagenham and Redbridge. Chigwell Construction Site. This is it. This is our 4th album. Under Moyes we’ve been through the promising potential of the debut (West Ham 1 – 1 Leicester), the wild highs of the sophomore record (West Ham 1 – 0 Chelsea, Huddersfield 1 – 4 West Ham), and the hollow lows of the 3rd album flop (West Ham 0 – 3 Burnley). But with Southampton on the horizon, we needed tonight to get back to our roots. We needed to start writing the 4th record. Give Arthur a call, we need to get the gang back together.

After the events of the Burnley game, and the subsequent break in Miami, this fixture took on a more serious complexion than a game where the opposition manager is a raffle-winner had any right to, and this showed in the ̶s̶t̶u̶p̶i̶d̶l̶y̶  surprisingly strong starting 11. Arthur! Noble! Antonio! Ginge! The original line-up, back for the 4th album.


It’s easy to romanticise a friendly as some sort of tactical testing ground, but in reality they are mostly dull affairs. This was one of the better ones. Antonio was a willing runner throughout, scoring 2 well-taken goals to continue his recent good form. He benefitted greatly from Jordan Hugill doing that thing that ex-pro pundits (particularly centre forwards) love to point out – simply staying central. and forward. centre forward. Who knew? Having struggled throughout, Hugill put the game to bed late on, after a spirited start to the second half saw the daggers pull one back, but the impressive thing throughout – for me – was the composure and nimble footwork of young Alfie Lewis. Joshua Pask also showed a lot of quality at centre back, having come on for the injured Collins, and Nathan Holland reminded many of us why he was so close to a first team place before picking up a nasty injury a few months ago.


I respect Moyes and the players for treating the game seriously, because the position Dagenham and Redbridge are in is no joke. If you couldn’t make the friendly but want to help their cause, they are playing Flyde on Saturday (24th) at 3 o’clock. They pour pints quicker than at the London stadium.


Tonight did the players, and our neighbours, a lot of good – so before we worry about going 1-0 down after 5 minutes to Southampton, before the media air more of our dirty laundry, before lanzini gets injured on international duty, let’s just take a minute to enjoy a positive night for the club. Tonight we got back to our roots : our academy, and the East end community.




Adrian – 7

Zabaleta – 6

Ginge – 5 (injured)

Evra – 6

Cresswell – 5

Noble – 6

Lewis – 8

Holland – 7

Masuaku – 7

Antonio – 9

Hugill – 6



Powell – 6

Barrett – 6

Johnson – 6

Scully – 7

Pask – 7


By Dan Hunter 



Jon Pope

By Jon Pope

Use to sit in the BML for 10 years, been a West Ham fan all my life, and my great grandfather was a founder member of the TIW. I also help run the Hammer Chat website.

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